The New England Patriots should have their full starting offensive line available next Sunday when they open the regular season against the Houston Texans at Gillette Stadium.
Right tackle Marcus Cannon is expected to be cleared to play in Week 1 after missing the entire preseason with a leg injury, a source told Jeff Howe of The Athletic on Saturday.
Cannon suffered the injury Aug. 1 and missed 12 practices as a result. He returned to the practice field last week but did not suit up for Thursday’s preseason finale — no surprise considering the Patriots sat all of their starters in that game.
With Cannon out, LaAdrian Waddle has served as the Patriots’ top right tackle for much of the summer. Waddle will begin the season as New England’s swing tackle, with Cannon starting on the right side and Trent Brown manning the left.
Cannon, a second-team All-Pro in 2016, has not appeared in a game since Week 8 of last season. He sustained an ankle injury in that game that landed him on injured reserve.
The Patriots must finalize their 53-man roster by 4 p.m. ET on Saturday. Cannon’s return to full health could allow them to keep fewer offensive linemen, potentially opening up a spot for a player at another position.
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